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06 December 2004 @ 05:15 pm
So this is my dream  
It's actually doable, if there are enough people who share the dream. And it's a really great dream indeed.

Look at this property. Seriously, look at it. Woods. Lakes. Reasonably near an urban area, where the average low in winter is 20 degrees F. And who of us hasn't experienced that level of cold? It's not like the Yukon, y'all.

Here's another one. And another. And still another.

My dream:

For me and a number of like-minded people to buy one of these plots of land. Each of us to carve off a chunk, 5 or 10 acres, build a house, and be a community. We would all know and trust each other. We would be far enough apart for privacy, but close enough that one family could take another's kids for the night if necessary. We'd be close enough to the major metropolitan area in the province (Halifax) for jobs. For major purchases, such as a snowplow, we'd all contribute.

Canada has a very good immigration program, and they are looking for skilled tradespeople and techies. You don't have to give up US citizenship to live there. And if 7 families/people could put down, say, $3500 Canadian (approximately $2900 US), we'd have a 50% down payment.

I'm not talking about moving there right away. Just buying. Land appreciates, and the longer we hold on to it, even without building, the more it'll be worth. Hell, if you just wanted to use it as vacation camping grounds, you could do that. I think living there would be better, but that's me. :) For those of us who're concerned about the growing fascism in the US, it's a place to escape to. For those of us who believe global warming exists, it's retirement insurance. For me, this isn't about leaving the US-- if there was a place in the US where I could be close to urbanity, get a job and buy this amount of beautiful land for this price, I'd go there too. But it helps that Canada's national priorities are in line with mine.

It's financially possible. It can be realized. It just requires taking that leap.

Anyone want to take the leap with me?
Nick Charlesbluelens on December 6th, 2004 02:52 pm (UTC)
This is nothing negative about your dream trust me.

With that said. You should check out this book The Eden Express By Mark Vonnegut.

This is a really interesting book chronicling Marks descent into insanity and his return back. Most of this happened in a commune he helped start in Canada. Keep in mind this was in the 70's with heavy drug use and such so, like I said above, this is in no way trying to detract you from what you posted. I just think it is an interesting read considering.

I have a copy if we ever meet in person and you are interested in reading it.
Elle: Nasty motherfuckertheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:15 am (UTC)
I've read several accounts of communal living, enough to know that it takes a hell of a lot of hard work. I'm not proposing a commune as such (see my comment to stakebait below) but a planned community, for lack of a better term. Much like a subdivision, except we all do the development, rather than the developer. No communal farms or anything. That's a recipe for broken friendships.

I forget, are you in Canada? Do you have any tips for where to look?
And The Clocks Were Striking Thirteen: Squee!_redpanda_ on December 6th, 2004 03:02 pm (UTC)
!!! I love you.
Elle: Let me make you bleedtheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:18 am (UTC)
Hee! Love you too, darlin. :) You aren't coming, though, you with your twodoors and fancy bodies buried under the foundation...

Although, y'know, you'd be welcome if you wanted to. :)
Mearimeari on December 6th, 2004 04:07 pm (UTC)
I SO wish that I could do that.. becasue I love that idea!

But we have *gets checkbook* $34.87
rednikki on December 6th, 2004 04:41 pm (UTC)
I'm in a similar boat - we haven't got much money due to my husband's recent move and my imminent one.

Also, my husband has SAD, and there is NO way I will get him to move that far north. (And, trust me, this is good for all concerned.)
Tyellastyellas on December 6th, 2004 04:54 pm (UTC)
'Course you could always move down South with me! I wish you luck, Cereselle, and of course you know all the practical stuff that goes along with this venture...
Elle: Spiderweb beautytheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:41 am (UTC)
Thank you! And I don't know all the practical stuff (yet), but I'm not so spacy that I think all we need is love to get along. :) I emailed a realtor up there asking for information and advice. We'll see if she gets in touch.
Elle: Here behind my walltheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:40 am (UTC)
*pets you both*

Well, you'll know where to find us if you escape the death squads who want to haul you to Gitmo.. :)

(i am KIDDING.)
Elle: I created my own prisontheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:20 am (UTC)
It's probably not going to happen anytime soon. Not till next summer at least, possibly fall. Someone would need to go up and check out property, and I have no vacation time available until then. :)

Also I have to save money. Christmas is wiping me RIGHT out.
can't think of a namectoan on December 6th, 2004 04:28 pm (UTC)
It's a beatiful dream. But where I already own 2.5 acres of land in Nova Scotia, I don't think I'll join you. But I'll visit your commune once you establish it!
Elle: Time to get dressed!theletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:23 am (UTC)

You can definitely come visit. We'll take turns hosting OC nights. :)

Oh! Let me ask you, is it doable to commute from Head of Jeddore to Halifax? I read that the property's "40 minutes from metro," and I assumed Metro meant Halifax, but I'm not sure it always does, as there were properties further out claiming to be 15 minutes from metro.

Is Sheet Bay too far? It looks too far.
Maureen Lycaonmaureenlycaon on December 6th, 2004 04:45 pm (UTC)
If I had the money, I would definitely be interested. Unfortunately, that's not realistic right now, or in the foreseeable near future (next few years).

Even so, I hope I'll have a chance to join in, eventually. *fingers crossed*
Elle: Spiderweb beautytheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 11:25 am (UTC)
Really? I thought you were looking on the West Coast?

You are absolutely welcome. If we can get a down payment but then have more people buy in later, that would take payment pressure off the rest of us. :) And I don't think I'd be able to go up there to live for a couple years yet, not till I get some more debts paid off.
Maureen Lycaonmaureenlycaon on December 8th, 2004 06:48 pm (UTC)
That's true, but if I had enough money, I'd be willing to chip in as a sort of investment thing. If I can't legally emigrate, I could simply move to Canada and live there. I wouldn't be able to vote, of course, but that's not the worst possible fate if things get really, really bad here. And contributing would be one step in that direction.

We'll see what happens with my finances.
Merstakebait on December 6th, 2004 07:05 pm (UTC)
I'm interested, but I'm afraid of group ownership. I've seen it go wrong too many times with only a few people -- it's easy to get in, but it's hard to get out if you want to, the others have to buy you out or find a likeminded person who wants in, and neither is easy. If we all owned our own little plot and could sell it as we wished, that's one thing -- but that would put the community of likeminded souls at risk.

I suppose it could be managed like a co-op -- you own your house and a share of the land held in common, and you can sell your share but the buyer needs board approval -- but I'd need those kind of details hammered out before I said I'm in, because this would mostly be an investment for me. I can't afford to put what is most of my accessible savings into something without knowing I could get it back out.

Also I've got my own little coterie of half-serious "so are we gonna start a little town together if we have to flee" people, so I'd have to see if they wanna be in on something like this or start their own smaller version.
Elle: Kanji chesttheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 12:07 pm (UTC)
First, Spike icon for you. :)

Second, yes. Group ownership and communal living is a lovely idea. It requires a hell of a lot of work, and frankly, I'm not sure I'm up for it, let alone asking it of anyone else. :)

What I had in mind is buying the property and subdividing it. We'd figure out boundaries and register the lots, and from there, we'd each own the land we paid for. Much like a developer does, except we'd be our own developers.

I also see your point about co-op ownership, and it's something I've pondered. Here's what I think:

I'm doing this because I want to move here, or at least invest in land here. However, I don't want to leave all my friends behind. So, if there are friends of mine who also want to move to Canada, we should do it together so we will have our own built-in community where we already know and like each other.

However. If it doesn't work for some people, I don't want them to be tied to this. The winters might be too much. People might just not be happy there. I don't want to force my friends to jump through a bunch of hoops to leave. If the community doesn't work out, it doesn't work out. People should be free to sell the land they bought. I love the idea of all my friends living together in peace and harmony, but I don't want to put that vision above the practicalities of life. So in answer to the concern about putting the community at risk, I would say let it happen. I'd rather someone leave and be happy than stay and be resentful and miserable. And who knows, I may be one of those people. Maybe I can't hack the cold. Now I'm starting to panic. :)

Much as I hate to say it, my vision of "community" is more like a neighborhood association. NOT one that dictates what color flowers you can plant, or what wattage of lightbulb you have in your porch light, but one where the members pay equally for things we all need, such as road repair, snowplow purchase and maintenance, satellite signal, etc.

It's where one person plants zucchini in their garden and (because zucchini are so prolific) gives zucchini to the entire group, while someone else plants tomatoes, and someone else plants onions. No one is forced to plant anything if they aren't interested, but for the rest, organizing with the others enables everyone to get a variety.

It's where you can call on your neighbor to fix your plumbing, while your neighbor can call on you to help paint their house. Rather than having communal land, it's pooling our skills to help each other live.

And I would love it if your coterie would like to be in on this. :) One of my brothers-in-law is into the idea, although he won't be able to move for at least 9 years (daughter lives with her mother). But he's in. And the more people we have, the smaller-scale we can go, if there are those who only want two acres as opposed to ten.

I think I'm going to make another post on the practicalities of doing this. :)
(Deleted comment)
Elle: Watery thoughttheletterelle on December 7th, 2004 12:10 pm (UTC)
Heee. :) Welcome!

When do you get to move away from Houston? Like I said above, my brother-in-law can't leave Racine until his daughter's grown.

*frustrates* I need MONAE, so I can buy the land myself and sell bits of it later to people I like... :)